Yes, #CovidIsNotOver It can be a trend on social networks. Yet Americans seem to be happier than ever.
Survey data published by Gallup this week they indicate that as of this summer, 59.2 percent of Americans are “thriving,” the highest percentage ever recorded in Gallup’s 13-year measurement.
The most recent results, captured between June 14 and 20 as part of the Gallup panel, show a staggering rebound since the beginning of the pandemic.
In April 2020, only 46.4 percent of those surveyed considered themselves prosperous. That number is tied to the lowest level on record, on par with the worst from the 2008 financial crisis.
Gallup defines prosperous based on two metrics: how people rate their overall satisfaction now, and how they project their overall satisfaction to be five years from now. Those who rate their current life satisfaction at seven or more out of 10, and their projected future life at eight or more, are considered prosperous.
Growth rates have improved rapidly since the beginning of the year and it is not difficult to understand why. The growing satisfaction comes with the widespread administration of the COVID-19 vaccine and the consequent reopening of the economy. People are happy to be able to see their family and friends, and to return to bars, restaurants, cinemas and coffee shops.
More surprisingly, the Gallup data also found that although people’s current satisfaction ratings fell during the pandemic, they remained optimistic. Expected future satisfaction remained consistently higher than pre-COVID levels.
While there doesn’t seem to be an obvious reason why this was the case, it is a reason to be optimistic about American’s optimism.